Airbus secures USD75 bn in Farnborough deals

News4u-Business Desk-Airbus says it secured USD 75.3 billion in orders and commitments for 496 aircraft at the Farnborough Airshow — a record for the company at the premier aviation event in terms of dollar value and in aircraft.

The orders included the largely updated versions of its A330 wide body aircraft, which launched this week.

Airbus says the plane is more fuel efficient and has a longer range to help it compete against Boeing’s 787 Dreamliner. Airbus closed out the show Thursday with the announcement that Hong Kong Aviation Capital is to buy 70 of the A320 neo family aircraft. No financial details were disclosed.

The A320 new engine option incorporates the latest technology together with sharklet wing tips that help deliver fuel savings.


Airbus

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Fire in commercial building in Mumbai

News4u-News Desk-A major fire on Friday broke out in a 22-storey commercial building in a western suburb of Mumbai, officials said. No injuries or casualties have been reported so far, they said.

The blaze started on the 21st floor of Lotus Business Park on Andheri Link road, and later spread to the 20th floor, according to fire brigade officials.

“We got a call at around 11 AM that a fire has broken out in the commercial building. We initially thought it was a grade-1 fire and sent four fire tankers to the spot. The fire was then upgraded to grade 2 and we have now deployed 12 fire engines and nine water tankers at the site,” a fire brigade official told the news agency.

The fire, which gutted the top two floors of the building, is yet to be brought under control, he said.

“There was lot of smoke emanating from the top floors where the fire broke out. This caused panic among the people working there, which made the evacuation process a little difficult. But as per initial reports, the fire brigade has managed to evacuate everyone,” a municipal official said.


Fire in commercial building in Mumbai

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Nude scene in ‘Welcome to Me’ was ‘important’, says Kristen Wiig

News4u-Entertainment Desk-Washington: Kristen Wiig said that her “fully naked” scene in the upcoming film `Welcome To Me` was really important.

Wiig, 40, who`s well known for her comic roles, reportedly told a magazine that though she loves comedy, she always wanted to try her hand at drama and currently had two upcoming projects to that end namely `The Skeleton Twins` and `Welcome to Me,`.

The former `Saturday Night Live` star continued saying that when she went through the script for the latter, in which she portrays a woman with borderline personality disorder who wins millions in the lottery, she realized that she had nude scene lined up.

She added that she`d never read a character like that, and knew that if signed the film, she had to go through with the nudity as it was crucial. ANI


Kristen Wiig

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Israel resumes airstrikes as five-hour temporary truce ends

News4u-News Desk-Israeli warplanes on Thursday resumed bombings on Gaza after a five-hour truce ended abruptly with Hamas militants launching rocket attacks despite hectic diplomatic parleys to broker a ceasefire to end the 10 days of conflict that has killed 237 Palestinians.

A five-hour ceasefire was observed on the request of the United Nations for humanitarian reasons, but hostilities quickly resumed after it ended.

Four children were killed in an Israeli airstrike in the heart of Gaza city. Two Palestinians were injured in another airstrike.

Three Palestinians were killed in the tank shelling in the east of Gaza Strip. At least 17 persons were injured after a hospital in Gaza’s Shejaiya district came under Israeli fire.

Israel also shot down a Hamas drone, second such incident this week. At least three mortar shells were fired from Gaza during the ceasefire, and the Israeli military said a soldier was injured by an explosion during an “operational activity” near southern Gaza.

Troops responded with mortar fire, the Israel Defense Forces said.

Despite those incidents, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said both sides had “mostly respected” the ceasefire.

UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process Robert Serry had asked Israel for a humanitarian ceasefire following an incident in which four Palestinian children were killed on a beach in Gaza.

The two sides agreed to the ceasefire to allow Palestinians to stock up on food, water and other necessities.

During the lull in fighting, air raid sirens went off briefly in southern Israel and the truce appeared to be generally holding.

Palestinians rushed to shops and banks as the five-hour truce agreed by Israel and Hamas came into force.

“Should the humanitarian window be exploited by Hamas or other terror organisations for the purpose of launching attacks against Israeli civilian or military targets the IDF will respond firmly and decisively,” the Israel Defense Forces said in a statement on Thursday.

An earlier effort to permanently stop the fighting failed when Israel resumed airstrikes following a brief, one-sided ceasefire brokered by Egypt.

While Israel paused for six hours, Hamas rejected the deal and continued firing rockets. Hamas leaders said they had not been consulted, and complained the deal did not address their demands for greater freedom for Gaza’s 1.8 million residents.

At least 237 Palestinians have been killed and close to 1,700 have been injured since Israel began its anti-Hamas military operation 7th July, according to Palestinian health officials. One Israeli death has been reported.

Before announcing the temporary truce Thursday, Israeli tank fire killed three people in Rafah town in Gaza.

Their deaths came after another seven people were killed overnight.


Israel resumes airstrikes as five-hour temporary truce ends

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Top Maoist leader Panda held in Odisha

News4u-News Desk-Security forces today apprehended top Maoist commander Sabysachi Panda from Berhampore in Odisha.

Officials said the top Naxal leader was held after inputs were received by security agencies on his movement.

Panda is the top commander for armed Naxal groups operating in the state and his involvement has also been detected in operations outside the state like in Maharashtra and Chhattisgarh.

Agencies are confident of getting major clues towards Naxal Movement in states like Bihar, MP, Orrisa, Chhattisgarh and Maharashtra. As panda belongs to the Top brass of Naxals.


Sabysachi Panda

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No new tax in Delhi Budget; Rs 260 cr for power subsidy

News4u-News Desk-Proposing no new taxes in the Budget for Delhi, Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley today announced subsidy of Rs 0.80 to Rs 1.20 per unit to small power consumers as also a slew of measures like low floor buses, sanitation and multi-speciality hospital in Rohini.

The Rs 36,776 crore budget for Delhi was presented in Parliament as the state is currently under the President’s rule.

Proposing the Budget for 2014-15, Jaitley said no new tax has been proposed in Delhi and added that more night shelters would be set up in the National Capital Territory area.

A multi-speciality hospital will come up in Rohini and 50 dialysis centres in the different parts of NCT. Also four new sewage treatment plants have been planned for Delhi.

The government has earmarked Rs 260 crore for power subsidy.

Following protest by Congress and opposition members over the Budget proposals, Speaker Sumitra Mahajan said issues could be raised during the debate on it.

Jaitley later said he was only proposing the Budget, which would be passed after discussion

Referring to power tariff hike, Jaitley said it was necessitated due to increase in input costs.

“However, the poor and marginalised should not suffer. I, therefore, propose power subsidy of Rs 260 crore for domestic consumers to provide relief to targeted consumers on account of increase in tariff. The modalities will be worked out by the Government of NCT of Delhi,” he said.

Considering the paucity of good health facilities under government sector in South Delhi, he also proposed sanctioning one multi-speciality hospital for South Delhi in the current year. This will be in addition to the one proposed at Rohini.

The government has also proposed to increase plan outlay under pension to senior citizens from Rs 538 crore in 2013-14 to Rs 600 crore in the current fiscal.

Jaitley said that to solve water supply problems in the capital region, construction of long pending Renuka Dam would be taken up on priority.

In order to provide better transport to the commuters, Jaitley said tenders have been floated for procurement of 1,380 semi-low floor buses for DTC.

“To provide convenience to the commuters, DTC will introduce an automated fare collection system through electronic ticketing machines and card readers. This system will subsequently be integrated with the fare collection system of Delhi Metro,” he said.

Of the Rs 36,766 crore total budget estimate, Rs 19,066 crore is non-plan expenditure.


FM Arun Jaitley

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Black boxes recovered from wreckage of Malaysian jet

News4u-News Desk-Pro-Russia rebels on Friday said they have recovered the black boxes from the wreckage of the Malaysian plane blown by a missile over eastern Ukraine, killing all 298 people on board, including 100 world-renowned AIDS researchers and activists.

Russian news agency said that pro-Russia rebels have claimed to have recovered the black box of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 and had announced that they are planning to have it moved to Moscow for examination.

The Ukrainian government and the pro-Russian separatists in the east of the country have blamed each other for the alleged shooting down of the plane yesterday.

Pro-Russian rebels have agreed to give international investigators access to the crash site of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH 17 and allow the recovery of bodies scattered over a vast stretch of farmland.

“Rebel in eastern Ukraine will continue fighting in all areas except for the site of the Malaysian plane crash site,” a rebel commander was quoted as saying by the RIA Novosti.

The Boeing 777 carrying 298 people was en route from Amsterdam to the Malaysian capital, Kuala Lampur, when it crashed yesterday ineastern Ukraine, near the Russian border.

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko accused “terrorists” of downing the jet, referring to pro-Russian separatists.

“Terrorists have killed almost 300 persons with one shot,” Poroshenko said.

“Among them are women, children, citizens of different countries of the world. However, Russian defense ministry said it had picked up radar unit activity from a Ukrainian-controlled ‘Buk’ missile system on the day the Malaysian airliner crashed”.

Meanwhile, Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak today demanded that perpetrators must swiftly be brought to justice.

“This is a tragic day in what has already been a tragic year for Malaysia. The flight’s passengers were from many nations but we are all united in grief,” Najib said today.

The plane was on a scheduled flight to Kuala Lumpur and it had not made a distress call. It is still not clear if the jet was shot down purposely or mistakenly.

The flight manifest of the plane indicated that the MH17 had onboard 173 nationals from Netherlands, 44 Malaysians, 28 Australians, 12 Indonesians, 9 from UK, 4 from Germany, 4 from Belgium, 3 from the Philippines, one each from Canada, New Zealand and Hong Kong. The 15-member Malaysian crew included two ethnic Indians - flight steward Sanjid Singh Sandu and Ms. Rajendran.

The nationalities of 18 passengers were still to be verified.

About 100 of those killed in the crash were world- renowned AIDS researchers and activists heading to Australia for a global AIDS conference, reports said.


Black boxes recovered of MH17

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CSAT test: Govt says looking at issue with sensitivity

News4u-News Desk- Amid demands by Civil Service aspirants for scrapping the CSAT test, government on Friday said it was looking at the issue with “all the sympathy, sensitivity and seriousness”

Talking to reporters outside Parliament House, Minister of State for Personnel and Training Jitendra Singh blamed the Opposition for disrupting the proceedings in the Rajya Sabha where the government wanted to have a discussion on a statement made on the issue.

“The government today sought to place and make a statement in the Rajya Sabha on the issue of the UPSC exam…Unfortunately on account of disturbance caused by the Opposition, the discussion, which could have followed the statement, could not take place”.

“The government is absolutely seized of the matter. We are looking at the issue with all the sympathy, sensitivity and seriousness at our command,” Singh said.

Parties including Congress, RJD and Samajwadi Party had criticised the alleged “discrimination” by the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) against candidates opting for Hindi and regional languages as medium for Civil Services examination.

The aspirants have been holding prolonged protests and resorting to hunger strike for several weeks demanding scrapping of Civil Services Aptitude Tests (CSAT), saying the exam pattern was putting Hindi and regional language aspirants at a disadvantage.


UPSC

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NASA software to improve spacing between planes

News4u-Features Desk- NASA has developed new air traffic control software to better manage the spacing between planes to help save both time and fuel and reduce emissions.

The computer software tool designed to aid air traffic controllers was presented to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) during a ceremony at the agency’s headquarters in Washington.

The Terminal Sequencing and Spacing (TSS) technology will enable air traffic controllers to better manage the spacing between aircraft as they fly more efficient approaches into airports, saving both time and fuel and reducing emissions.

The software enables the routine use of what are called Performance Based Navigation procedures, resulting in fewer course and altitude changes, while also reducing the frequency of necessary communications between controllers and pilots.

The TSS tool provides information to controllers about the speeds they should assign to aircraft as they follow fuel-efficient, continuous-descent arrival procedures while passing through a region of airspace surrounding an airport called the TRACON (Terminal Radar Approach Control), covering a distance from an airport of about 80km.

TSS is the another step in NASA’s support of the development of a Next Generation Air Transportation System, or NextGen, which is a joint multi-agency and industry initiative to modernise and upgrade air traffic control system.

NASA’s Airspace Systems Programme, which is part of the agency’s Aeronautics Research Mission Directorate, began the research that led to the development of TSS in 2009, with prototype development beginning in 2011.

NASA used these prototypes to test TSS in 16 high-fidelity simulations involving controllers and pilots.


NASA

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Significant jump in NER in govt schools in Tamil Nadu

News4u-News Desk-Tamil Nadu has recorded significant jump in Net Enrolment Ratio in government schools over a period of 12 years as dropout percentage reduced considerably.

The NER at primary level rose from 93 per cent in 2001-02 to 99.80 per cent in 2013-14, School Education Minister KC Veeramani informed the state Assembly.

At upper primary level, NER increased from 90 per cent in 2001-02 to 99.10 per cent in 2013-14, he said.

Veeramani attributed the increase in NER to a series of measures undertaken by the Jayalalithaa government, including providing educational kit like books and textbooks, uniforms, school bags, footwear, free of cost besides introduction of English medium sections in government schools.

In 2013-14, English medium sections were introduced in 5,189 government schools benefiting 1.03 lakh students, he said.

“Due to these consistent efforts under the guidance of the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu J Jayalalithaa, the net enrolment has increased over the years and the number of dropouts has considerably reduced,” he said.

Government was also going ahead with opening of new schools, providing additional class rooms in schools, and creating new teaching and non-teaching posts, he said.

At the primary level, school dropout rate was 0.95 per cent in 2013-14 as against 12 per cent in 2001-2002. At upper primary level, it decreased from 13 per cent in 2001-02 to 1.65 per cent in 2013-14.

Further, under Right To Education, 49,864 students were admitted as per the provision of 25 per cent reservation to children from ‘disadvantaged group and weaker sections’ in entry level class in all unaided minority schools, the Minister informed.


Significant jump in NER in govt schools in Tamil Nadu

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